Answers Found In Ancient Ways

Mei Ying is a believer. The 24-year-old taxi driver, dressed in a trendy T shirt and jeans, is an ardent follower of Mazu, the sea goddess of peace. As a child, she was brought by her parents to a temple dedicated to the deity on Meizhou Island, off the coast of China's Fujian province. There, despite living in an officially atheistic nation, she was taught to worship. The goddess, says Mei, "is very receptive and answers all my prayers."

Mazu's benevolence attracts millions of worshippers. As many as 10,000 come each year on her birthday, the 23rd day of the third...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!